Sunday, June 17, 2012

Strawberries As Nature Intended


The strawberry patch at Restoration Farm is damp with the remnants of an early morning rain.   But, that doesn’t stop several of us from tugging up our cuffs and wading in to pick.   When it comes to freshly picked strawberries, you can’t let a little moisture hold you back.
It is like a treasure hunt.  Broad green leaves conceal most of the berries.   You have to lift the protective netting and then forage a bit with your hands until you find the prize.   Adults relish the satisfaction of plucking a perfect, glistening red strawberry and adding it to the basket.   Children think it’s the best game ever.    
But, be careful.    The strawberry patch is teaming with life.   One sharp-eyed forager spots a garden snake slithering through the underbrush with a small toad in its mouth.    This news sends another friend scurrying from the patch.   It’s all a far greater adventure than navigating the produce aisle to locate monstrous strawberries wrapped in clear plastic.  
Each year, the crop of strawberries seems to develop its own set of flavors and characteristics.   Some have been tart, and others dripping with juice.   These taste sweet and clean, evoking a refreshing spring rain shower.   They demand to be treated simply, celebrating that pure strawberry essence.    I choose a recipe from Jacques Pepin’s Essential Pepin -- where sliced strawberries are dressed with a dollop of sour cream and sprinkled with a dash of brown sugar – just enough embellishment to highlight the natural beauty of the strawberries.  
©2012 T.W. Barritt All Rights Reserved  

15 comments:

Sam @ My Carolina Kitchen said...

You're right, there's nothing better than freshly picked strawberries. We were able to get local strawberries this season in the mountains and they were some of the best I've ever eaten. Like raspberries, many were eaten en route home. I think your adjective "clean" best describes them.
Sam

lostpastremembered said...

As far as I'm concerned, just picked berries are divine. They really stand on their own since they are so full of flavor and not a pale chemical substitute, full of sugar but not flavor. I've never tried sour cream on berries... splendid idea.

~~louise~~ said...

Simply the best way to enjoy Strawberries, T.W.

The Strawberry crop has been dampened in our neck of the woods so when I find a descent batch from a roadside stand, they barely make it home to Marion.

There may be snakes in the garden but if you see a "gal" driving down the street deliciously popping berries in her mouth, that's me, preserving summer's bounty in my tummy:)

Thank you so much for sharing...

Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) said...

We have a resident garden snake this year, too. I tread cautiously in my garden, but if I had strawberries like the ones at Restoration Farm, I'd wade right in (and hope the snake would get out of my way!).

Karen (Back Road Journal) said...

Berry picking is a great adventure. A little garden snake is never going to keep me away from sweet berries.

sophiesfoodiefiles said...

Strawberry picking is such fun, fun!

I love this tasty strawberry recipe: easy does it but is has lots of flavour!

Yum Yum Yum! Lovely pictures too! ;)

Kalyn said...

I once worked at a French restaurant that served strawberries with sour cream and brown sugar, and have loved that combination ever since. And I bet it tastes even better when you pick your own strawberries!

Barbara said...

Snakes are not my favorite thing to run in to, but it may be worth it to pick your own berries. :)
My MIL used to make a summer dish like this...she called it Strawberries Romanoff. She added a little booze. Yum.

Velva said...

Fresh summer berries are amazing. Berries this fresh are perfect-it will take almost nothing to dress them up.

I am growing strawberries in my small garden patch. Its not easy to pull them perfect, I seem to be sharing them with the creatures who live in my garden too.

Happy summer.

Velva

Mary said...

I really love the simplicity of the berries you've shared with us. As I was reading your post it brought to mind the wonderful smell of strawberry fields following a light rain. It is a lovely way to pass the day. Have a wonderful evening. Blessings...Mary

Gloria said...

amazing I saw these strawberries and I wanna eat right now! berries are my favorities of the sumemr!

Catherine said...

Dear T.W., A few summers back we planted strawberries in our garden and every year since, we've had our own homegrown strawberries right out back. You are right, nothing is more enjoyable than getting outside and harvesting your own fruits (and veggies). There is so much satisfaction in it too.
Blessings to you my friend, Catherine

Fresh Local and Best said...

I never realized how much strawberries make me smile until I opened this page. My son was also pointing at the ripened berries. Freshly picked berries are the best and worth running into a garden snake or two.

tasteofbeirut said...

One year I picked strawberries in a small farm North of Dallas and these tiny beauties were turned into jam that same day! Love fresh berries! The snake does not apparently, preferring to swallow a toad! silly snake, he is missing out!

Lara Schneider said...

looks so delicious! Love summer!